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Augusta Firefighters Find Homeless Man Dead After Fire at Abandoned Structure

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Augusta firefighters found a homeless man dead inside an abandoned structure that caught fire early Friday.

Luis Edgardo Gonzalez Jr., 34, was discovered inside of the burning structure on the 500 block of Huntington Street, Coroner Mark Bowen said. Firefighters were dispatched just after 2 a.m. Friday.

According to a post by the Augusta Fire and EMA, firefighters were met with a fully engulfed house fire. A fast attack was initiated while simultaneously conducting a primary search.

“During this search, they discovered a male victim inside the abandoned structure, tragically found deceased in the front room behind a door,” the post said. “Firefighters worked diligently to swiftly bring the fire under control. Unfortunately, one person succumbed to their injuries.”

Also, two firefighters sustained burns during the fireground operations, one to the forearm and the other to the legs. The investigation into the cause of the fire and death incident is still ongoing, and an autopsy has been scheduled.

Gonzalez is the same man awaiting trial on charges of waving a gun at fellow patrons of a Circle K gas station in March 2021. He told responding deputies that he was out of gas and “going through a hard time and needed someone to be nice to him,” a report said.

During a search of his vehicle, deputies found a gun, three shell casings, a spare magazine and 42 live rounds of .380 caliber ammunition. Deputies arrested Gonzalez and found a small bag of meth.

Note: If you have a better photo of Gonzalez, please text it to 803-487-3224.

Greg Rickabaugh
Greg Rickabaugh
Greg Rickabaugh is an award-winning crime reporter in the Augusta-Aiken area with experience writing for The Augusta Chronicle, The Augusta Press and serving as publisher of The Jail Report. Rickabaugh is a 1994 graduate of the University of South Carolina and has appeared on several crime documentaries on the Investigation Discovery channel.
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